Bishop Launches Turnaround Prayer Movement
Bishop Thomas J. Bickerton asks all United Methodist in Western PA to commit to regular daily prayer as part of what he calls the Turnaround Prayer Movement.
“We know that God is not through with us yet, “ he wrote in a letter to pastors and other church leaders, “but there are important transitions that each of us must make to restore the church’s relevance, spirit, and confidence as we journey into the second decade of the 21st Century.”
Last fall the Bishop asked every congregation was asked to engage in strategic discussions about its future and to set what he called S.M.A.R.T. goals for the next five years. “I believe fulfillment of those goals will require a revival of our spirit and a re-examination of how we do church,” he explained.
“With the upcoming season of General, Annual, and Jurisdictional conferences, our church on all levels will be discerning the manner in which we move forward as a denomination,” the Bishop added.
“If we are going to be faithful to the call God has placed on our lives, it is time to pray for a turnaround. The future may look daunting, but the Holy Spirit at work around and within us can revive our spirit and our resolve to be the church of Jesus Christ,” he said.
Enclosed with the Bishop’s letter was a prayer commitment card and a prayer tent that individuals can use as a reminder to pray each day for a turnaround.
“We have set the goals. We are looking at a future filled with important decisions. It’s time to pray!” the Bishop said.
Recalling the words of the Apostle Paul in his letter to the church at Ephesus (Ephesians 3:20), Bishop Bickerton said the hope is that “God will work in and through us to transform our lives and our churches in ways that we do not know how to ask or imagine.”
Pastors were encouraged to order enough prayer tents and cards for everyone in their congregation to join in the Turnaround Prayer Movement. Order through this website or pick up copies at the UM Conference Center in Cranberry Twp.